Easy carnitas recipe, lots of room to improvise.  We used pork butt we brought home from a butchery class and made double this amount.  Be sure to cut off excess fat or remove large sections after roasting.


  • 4 pound boneless pork butt cut into cubes

  • 1 1/2 tsp salt

  • 3/4 tsp pepper

  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cumin

  • 1 onion, peeled and quartered

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 tsp dried oregano

  • 2 Tb fresh lime juice

  • 2 C water, to cover

  • 1 medium orange, juiced and keep the spent halves


  1.  Heat oven to 300 degrees.

  2. Combine all the ingredients in a large Dutch oven.

  3. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-high heat, uncovered.

  4. Cover pot and transfer to the oven, about 2 hours.

  5. Remove the pot from the oven and turn on the broiler.

  6. Remove the meat from the pan and place it on a large foil-lined pan.

  7. Remove and discard bay leaves & onion from dutch oven, keep the cooking liquid.

  8. Place pot over high heat on the stove and boil until it thickens and syrupy, about 20 minutes. You should have about 1 C of liquid remaining at the end.

  9.  Use two forks to pull each cube of pork into three equal sized pieces. Once the liquid has reduced, gently fold in the pieces of pork into the pot.  Add additional salt and pepper if necessary.

  10. Spread the pork back onto the foil lined pan and evenly spread the meat around so there is a single layer of meat. Place in oven to broil until the top of the meat is well browned and edges are slightly crisp. Keep a close eye on the meat during this stage. Flip the carnitas to crisp further.  Serve with tortillas or over rice

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